* While I would severally tone-down some annoying aspects of certain characters (like Antoine's cowardliness and Dulcy's clumsiness), I would also make the cast feel more evenly balanced instead of just being one-note characters. For example, Sonic is still as cocky and bullheaded as ever, but I would make him a bit more in the right; and I would make Sally prone to occasional mistakes, just to put her on par with Sonic. On a similar note, I would also add a lair of comedy to Robotnik's character, making him silly and entertaining to watch, and yet still threatening and intimidating. And as the series goes on, he slowly looses his cool, calculating side and becomes more incompetent as a result.
I agree largely on this. The 'Sonic screws up and learns a lesson' formula got very tiresome in the second season. The characters were too often limited to the same roles over and over (eg. Sally was his Straight Man, Ant was his Straw Loser) and those that had no purpose were just forgot about. It's not that Sonic should NEVER make personality-enduced mistakes, that's a great deal of his humanization, but it should be moderated with clarity moments and other characters going through the same treatment. Usage of the Sanity Ball is pivotal here, making each character have moments of weakness or clarity that cause their actual personality to have effect on the plot (eg. more instances Sally's meticulous qualities actually make her screw up, or moments Ant's fearfulness actually makes him right about something, instances Rotor or Bunnie contribute ANYTHING personality wise). Even Dulcy could be good if they shown her trying to overcome her flaws such as her clumsiness rather than remaining one note comic relief.
Basically every character learning to moderate their defining traits, but still given moments such traits actually benefit them. This is something I feel was rather lacking in Satam, and even more so the Archie comics. Friendship Is Magic is good example of doing this (that it even uses similar archetypes as the Freedom Fighters helps too). If I remember correctly Underground did this to some degree with the siblings too, each of them taking turns being the spotlighted instigator or the secondary voice of reason.
I agree toning down Sonic a little, less in terms of his flaws, but making him maybe less of an obnoxious jerk about them (I think his treatment of Ant leaned too much into contemptible bullying and flat out hatred by the end of it for example, while the first few episodes were more playful teasing that seemed more characteristic to him). Also dial down the nineties slang greatly. I think something like a merging of him with his games persona would do well, that is also arrogant and reckless (see Lost World) but maintains redeeming aspects such a mellow, forgiving nature.
Concerning Robotnik, I don't mind him being slightly wackier and even slightly pathos enducing like he was in Season Two, it's just doing so in a manner that still maintained suspension of disbelief. Robotnik became incompetent to the point it was hard to believe he could seriously have kept hold of the kingdom for so long. Granted this was less from him being clownish and more he became so cliched 'evil for evulz sake', and was hindered in his tactics and even his key ambitions by his sadism. I liked the idea in Season One that Robotnik was ruthless, but actually held some sort of value towards robots, even giving some of them sentience, this gave some sort of goal in him turning the world into industries outside just making it uninhabitable and turning him into the Omega Man.
I'd maybe also retcon back parts to the older bible canon such as where he only took over for a year or two, and robotocization was brainwashing rather than living death hell. At the end of the day, Satam was still whimsical and there's some dramatic value that such extremes can't add up to in a children's cartoon. Better it be tamed and believable than dark and pretentious.
Concerning games characters and concepts, I agree it should be kept toned down and limited to where it could benefit only. I admit stuff like the Time Stones and the Floating Island did almost seem like it was asking for games material to be used. Stuff like Shadow and GUN however are kinda incompatible without taking up a huge amount of screen time to be established and developed properly however. I like the idea of some of Robotnik's goons being adapted however. Gamma especially would be an interesting concept to put in Satam, an interpretation where supposedly nothing good can come from Robotnik's technology.